Too Soon: Goon Reviews Community “Analysis of Cork-Based Networking”

Community - Season 5

 

Nathan Fillion guest starred on Community.  Nathan Fillion, guest starred, on, Community!!!  That was just freaking amazing, on so very many levels.

We rejoin our favorite group of dysfunctional students and teachers as they are really digging into the cause to save Greendale.  Annie, in true Annie fashion, has complied a lengthy list of things they need to do in order to fix up Greendale, including updating the student census, rehanging a bulletin board, and organizing one of Greendale’s  many dances.  Of course the  group is split up and we are treated to a delightful series of subplots as they bumble their way through their tasks.

Let’s start with the main, the bulletin board.  Annie and Professor Hickey team up to get the bulletin board in the cafeteria hung up.  Hickey puts in a half assed effort, causing Annie to jump in and get the problem fixed.  What comes next is a series of red tape and bureaucratic nightmares as Annie must wheel and deal her way through the various groups around Greendale to get this done.  We start with putting in a work request with the janitors, who lets be honest, are always a delight to see.  From this we go to the custodians, (I honestly did not know there was a difference between the two) their president, played by the amazing Nathan Fillion, will push the work order to the top if Annie can get the porn sites unblocked, leading us to the IT lady, who wants a better parking spot, leading us to the head of parking who wants total control over the bulletin boards so he can crush the ride share program.  This entire sequence is just loads of fun to watch as we see Annie descending into a rather dark place as she attempts to achieve her goal.  Once again her drive and single minded determination is taking her someplace she shouldn’t go, and surprisingly enough its Hickey that has to pull her back.  That is what made this plot great,  Hickey has been an enjoyable character thus far, but hasn’t done much to venture outside his established character, here we got to see him break from his mold and basically save Annie from going to far to the dark side.  His moment at the end of tearing down his own board and hanging it up was perfect, showing just how his interactions with Annie were able to get through to him and show some hidden depths to his character.  The final part of the Save Greendale Committee standing off against the Dean and janitors was just ridiculous fun.

While Annie was busying traveling the dark roads of community college bureaucracy we are treated the ridiculousness of Jeff, Shirley, Chang, and Duncan trying to put together the mid-term dance.  These scenes are few, but fun, as we watch them try to tap into some sort of school spirit and come up with a theme for the dance.  Chang suggests “Bear down for Mid-terms” and after some guilt tripping, the others agree, and we see them actually having some fun with the it.  This was surprising, but amusing.  We got see Jeff and the others actually really getting into something school related, and enjoying themselves, only for all their hard work to be pointless when Neal tells them of the news story of the little girl getting mauled by an escaped bear at her birthday party. (too soon guys, too soon)  We then see that they do a rush job of turning bear down into Fat Dog, and using Chang’s guilt  tripping tactics on Annie when she questions the theme.  All things considered, this particular sub plot was short and sweet.  Nothing groundbreaking with the characters, but was fun to watch and was a nice break between scenes.

Now onto our final story, and my personal favorite, Abed and Britta updating the census.  There whole thing starts out with an amusing reference to an HBO show that is eerily similar to Game of Thrones, but totally isn’t, completely different epic fantasy series full of boobs, blood, betrayal, and dragons.  Yup, totally not Game of Thrones.  Anywho, Britta gets mad at Abed for spoiling the show, as she is only on the first season, so she sets out to read the books the show is based on and spoil things for him.  She fails, of course, she is Britta after all.  But we are treated to a fun bit between Abed and a deaf girl, who I believe was played by Katie Leclerc from ABC Family’s Switched at Birth. (if I am wrong on that someone please correct me)  Abed learns sign language so he can better talk to her, and Britta continues to try and spoil the show for Abed, that is pretty much how things progress until the end when she drops a major spoiler on Abed, being payed off by Britta to do so.  The reason this particular subplot was my favorite of the episode was because we got to see Abed connecting with another character outside the group, which is always fun to watch as those moments aren’t overly present in the series.  Sure they have come up before, Britta even makes an amusing reference to the fact of Abed connecting with random girls who are never heard from again, until now.  After Britta spoils things with the girl, Abed walks away, sad and mopey, only to run into coat check girl Rachel, who last we saw in season 4’s “History of Dance.”  Honestly, this was kind of a touching scene for Abed, as he apologizes for not calling her, making a fun reference to the year of the gas leak (this seems to have quashed the rumors of this being an allusion to a potential Communtiy movie, and instead is just a fun jab at the everything wrong with season 4)  I am honestly happy that they brought Rachel back, and I hope that she will be a more common face around campus now.  With Troy gone, Abed is going to need someone new to connect with, and I think bringing in a romantic interest for his character could be a great way to handle this.  While no one could ever replace Troy in our hearts, seeing someone new in Abed’s life is nice, and has a lot of potential for character fun times.

Overall, the theme for this weeks episode seemed to be “Guest Stars!” as he had a slew of them.  Nathan Fillion, Paget Brewster from Criminal Minds playing the IT person, and Robert Patrick from a whole slew of amazing things.  It seemed that with Troy gone, they needed something to fill that void, and what better than a mess of fairly impressive guest stars.  They were fun to watch, and made for a great episode.   I will admit that I was bit leery of the show with Troy being gone, but I must admit that it was still fun, while the loss of Troy is a big one, I have every confidence that Harmon and the actors will still be able to turn out a great show week after week.
And with that, we bid a temporary farewell to our favorite community college, as the show will be on hiatus until after the Olympics have run their course.

Goon out

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Oliver’s got Angry Face: Goon Reviews Arrow “Tremors”

Tremors

 

Okay, I am just gonna say this now, get it out of the way and make my thoughts on the matter 100% clear.  I am honestly and truly hating Laurel at the moment.  Yes, something bad happened to her, I can understand and sympathize with that, but her whole “oh woe is me, no one can understand my pain” act is just wearing on my nerves, Pretty much every this she shows up I just want to Gibb’s Slap her. (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Gibbs-slap) However, there may just be some hope for her yet, Sara’s back!  Maybe she can smack some sense into her sister.  And yeah, saying that out loud makes me realize how stupid that idea is.  But hey, at least Sara’s back!

On the island we have come to know and love, we rejoin Oliver and Sara in their search for Slade.  Not much happens at first, we get a revisit to the cave of graves from earlier on, and Oliver has a nice moment of self pity about Shado’s death, only for Sara to snap him out of it.  I liked this, this was good.  I have been loving Sara’s character from the  get go, and she is only getting better with time.  The pair catch up with Slade as he is about to use the missile launcher, left over from our season 1 baddies, to take out Ivo’s boat. Oliver talks him down and we are treated with a touching “bro” moment between the two.  I liked this, it really showcases how strong their friendship is, and will make the inevitable fallout between them that much greater to watch.  I cannot wait for that.

Back in the present, an old villain busts out of jail, one Bronze Tiger.  Yes, I agree with Felicity, silly nickname, but I am letting it slide because he is character coming straight out of the comics, so I can forgive that.  He is hired by random bad guy of the week to steal a mysterious device that can kill thousands, which is later revealed to a prototype of the earthquake machine that Merlin used to take out the Glades.  It was nice to see a call back to that, shows there are some lasting effects of Merlin’s plan.  Also big this week, we see the beginning of Roy’s training by The Arrow.  It goes slow, surprise surprise.  Roy can’t get a grip on his anger, and that is driving him out of control, as shown by his flipping out on the random mook when Oliver takes him out in the field, allowing Tiger to escape with the machine.  Naturally there is some fall out between Roy and Oliver over this, Roy gets all pissy again and storms off, saying he will do things on his own.  At the climatic showdown, Oliver gets pinned down by Tiger and his claws, but is saved by Roy, who starts flipping out and makes with the massive face punching again.  In the end, Oliver reveals his identity and gets through to Roy, together they blow up the earthquake machine, that at this point was armed, and they save the day.  Hooray!!

Personally, I loved that Oliver dropped the mask to help Roy.  It makes sense, Roy was pissed, at so many different things, including the Arrow.  Really, who wouldn’t be angry at someone for putting an arrow through his leg.  By telling Roy who he is, the Arrow went from being the faceless figure, to the older brother of the girl he loves.  Oliver spent the entire episode trying to find a way to get through to Roy while he was the Arrow, and failed to do it.  Instead, he capitalizes on Roy’s love for Thea, by showing him that he cares for her as well, gives him an actual person to relate to and connect with instead of just a violent vigilante.  I can not wait to see how this will play out, and personally, I am wondering if Roy is going to be  taking up the mantle of Red Arrow or Arsenal.  Personally I am leaning towards Red Arrow, he has one to many arms to be Arsenal at this point.

In out subplot, we get some solid Queen family time.  Moira is off to dinner with Walter, and it was fantastic seeing him again, where she is approached with the idea running for mayor against Blood.  Walter and others realize that what Blood is promising will financially destroy the city, and they want to stop him.  This was an interesting angle to take, and I loved it.  We have a group working against Blood, not because they think he’s evil or has some nefarious plot, but because they realize that what he wants to do will cause more damage to the city than good, and they want to stop him because they honestly want to help the city.  The choice of having Moira run against him is interesting, and could lead to a solid redemption story for her as she works to make up for her past wrongs, even if they were done for an understandable reason.  What was best about this was Thea, and her full support of her mom’s bid for mayor.  Thea is once again proving to be a remarkable character, that has shown some amazing development since last season.  Seriously, can we just ditch Laurel and give all her screen time to Thea?  That would make this show even better.

At the closeout to this episode, we see Bronze Tiger approached by Amanda Waller, and she offers him a place on a squad she is putting together.  I must admit, I am not liking Cynthia Addai-Robinson as Amanda Waller very much.  She isn’t a bad actress or anything, but I am just not buying her as Amanda Waller.  I feel she is lacking the force of personalty that I have come to attribute to the character.  I will say that I love the reference to the Suicide Squad at the end there, made even better by the fact that Bronze Tiger was in fact a member of the Squad, at least before the New 52 hit, as far as I know he hasn’t made an appearance since then,  but I could be wrong on that.

Overall, apart from the parts with Laurel, this was a good episode.  Some pretty major steps forward with the Oliver/Roy partnership, some awesome new stuff with Moira, Thea being as amazing as usual, and planted seeds of a future appearance of the Suicide Squad.  I am  still ever so eager to see how these stories progress.

Goon out.

 

They have Gods!?: Goon Reviews Community “Geothermal Escapism”

Screen-Shot-2014-01-24-at-8.10.59-AM

 

What is a Community college to do when paintball has been over played?

Answer: LAVA!!!

This week we are saying goodbye to Troy, and I have to say that it was an amazing send off for his character.   In the same vein as season 1’s Modern Warfare and season 2’s Fistfull of Paintballs/Few Paintballs More we are treated with an homage/parody episode, this time to movies such as Mad Max series and other post apocalypse films.  Admittedly I was a little worried about this episode, it was going to be hard to say good bye to Troy, after all, without him there will never be another episode of Troy and Abed in the Morning!  This changed after about 5 minutes, and I was watching with baited breath just who would survive a Lava infused Greendale, what alliances would form, who would betray who, and who would emerge the lord of Lavadale!

The episode opens with Study Group having a send off party for Troy, everyone wishing him luck and well on his journey around the world, except for Britta.  Britta is obsessed with the fact that no one is sad over Troy’s leaving, claiming that they are not properly dealing with their friend leaving.  I would of course be willing to write this off as Britta just being Britta, but pretty much everything she was said was proven true by Abed and his campus wide game.

From here one out things get weird, and by weird I mean freaking amazing!  We see the characters, both the Study Group and the various other Human Beings, fully embracing Abed’s game, all determined to win the prize at the end, a rare comic book worth a butt ton of money.  Surprisingly enough, throughout all of this Britta is the sole voice of reason.  She see’s what is happening, Abed being unwilling to let his friend go.  This is what made this episode amazing, Britta was actually the sole voice of reason, trying to get through to Abed and the others so that they can properly deal with Troy’s departure.  What makes this so out of  the ordinary for Community, Britta being competent at something, is what makes this episode stand out as one of the best of season, possibly even the series.

This all comes to a conclusion in the basement, after we see Troy and Abed in bubble burst through the ranks of Professor Hickey’s chair walkers, (totally awesome by the way) partake in nail biting game of chicken with the Professor, and a great chase through the halls.  With the best friends cornered and clinging to shelves to escape the lava, Abed finally reveals all.  He doesn’t want the game to end, because if it does, he says goodbye to his best friend.  To him, everything is real, the lava, the death, all of it.  This scene was actually a bit tear jerking to watch.  Troy and Abed’s friendship has been one of the greatest parts of this show to watch, and it is clear to see just how important their friendship is to each other, and we all know how Abed doesn’t handle change well.

Throughout this entire episode Abed perfectly shows this aspect of his character.  From first starting the game, offering an amazing prize to the victor to ensure it lasts as long as possible, to leaving Britta to “die” because she is the biggest threat to the game, and his continued friendship with Troy, everything he does it to put off dealing with the loss of his friend.  At the end, Abed realizes he has no choice but to end the game, giving us an amusing heroic “sacrifice” to watch.  After this, we learn that Britta wasn’t trying to break Abed, or had any real malicious intent, she was honestly  trying to help her friend deal with a huge change in a healthy way.  That’s right people, Britta actually successfully used psychology to save the day, I’m as shocked as you are, really, I am.  What’s even more of a shock is, she succeeds.  Sure, she has to play into Abed’s world to do so, cloning a new Abed, but this works.  She learns the best way to help Abed isn’t to try and change how he views the world, but instead temporarily adopts that same view to help him come to grips and better accept the real world.

In the end, Abed, and the rest of the Study Group, is “cloned” and are bidding farewell to Troy.  We get touching goodbyes from the whole gang, my personal favorite being Jeff admitting that Troy is a far cooler guy than he will ever be, and even a surprise guest appearance by Levar Burton, who will be sailing around the world with Troy to make sure he doesn’t cheat.

Overall, this was a fantastic way to say goodbye to Troy, full of emotions and fun times.  Donald Glover, Community won’t be the same without you and you will be sorely missed by us all.

Goon out.

His last name is Blood, that can’t be a good sign: Goon Reviews Arrow “Blind Spot”

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Holy crap, Laurel actually did something this week.  Will wonders never cease.

When last we left our island dwelling heroes, Ivo had offered a way off the island and Slade had taken the wonder drug and disappeared.  We rejoin Oliver and Sarah with them trying to find Slade, before deciding to call it a night in the airplane and catch some sleep.  Sarah then calls Ivo, and he quickly descends into psychotically evil threats, and Sarah hangs up on him.  All things consider not much really happens on the island this week.  We had some touching moments between Oliver and Sarah, and the reveal the she had a thing for him before he started dating Laurel.  Overall, not much happened here, again it just feels like its a lot of set up for the future, with dashes of character moments thrown in.  At this point I am really wishing they would just hurry this story along, I am finding Ivo to be an interesting character and really want to see more of him, I honestly want to know if he will survive the island and become a villain in the present story, or if he will meet his arrowy death by Oliver.  Either way, something needs to really push this story along because its starting to drag a bit.

Back in Starling City, we see Sebastian Blood paying a visit to his mom in the hospital, Saint Walker hospital to be exact, forgot to mention this last week but nice little call out to Green Lantern there.  He kills his mom, punishment for telling the truth to Laurel, and later gets chewed out by Slade for doing so.  It’s pretty clear to see who is the dominant one in this relationship.  While Brother Blood is being made an assassin’s little bitch, we see Laurel continuing to follow the whole “Blood is evil thing” she has firmly engraved in her mind. (how can you blame her though, the guy has one of the most ominous sounding last names ever!)  To do this, she employs help from Starling’s resident Robin Hood impersonator, the Arrow.  This episode does serve as a nice call back to season one when we saw Laurel and Oliver’s super hero alter ego working together on a fairly regular basis, which was honestly nice to see again, even if Laurel is still a less than impressive character.

We see the pair of them working together to follow up on Laurel’s hunch, breaking into a police archive to find the file that will incriminate him.  Felicity works her hacker magic, but hits a road block when an actually competent security guard is able to reboot the system and call the police.  We get a shoot out, which while fun, was far from one of the better action scenes in the show.  After this Laurel gets a police raid on her apartment, where his drinking/pill problem is finally revealed, and she proceeds to get nabbed by Blood’s minions.  In true hero fashion, Oliver suits up and goes to save her, having another decent fight scene with Blood, ending with Laurel gunning down the villain and seeing beneath the mask Blood’s minion on the police force, acting as a clever mislead for the heroes.

Honestly, I was not thrilled with this.  It really seemed like Oliver took a back seat to Laurel this week, which was annoying because Laurel is still such an eye rolling character.   I am having a hard time really taking her seriously and even when given a more center role in the episode, she still just doesn’t do much.  I have said this before, and I will say it again, I don’t think the writer’s really know what do with her at this point.  In season one she acted as a potential love interest for Oliver, an ally and confidant of the Arrow, and served to bring relationship drama through her relationship with Tommy.  That is all pretty much gone at this point.  Oliver seems to have moved on from her, which I am honestly thrilled about, and her working against him and trying to get him arrested early this season pretty much killed off her being an ally of Oliver.  She’s just sort of there now, and while they are trying to something with her, her working against Blood and her addiction problems, they are not doing anything well, or really making her interesting.  Anytime she shows up I just get annoyed because she is taking time away from the plot.  The writers either need to do something good with her, or just write her off the show, she can’t keep existing in this whole limbo state she has been in, its just annoying.

In the subplot, we see Roy still trying to come to terms with his new found powers.  He employ’s Sin’s help to start taking out bad guys in the city, while simultaneously keeping Thea in the dark about it, despite her best efforts to get him to open up about what’s wrong.  Its a short bit and is fairly straightforward.  Roy loses it, almost kills the guy he was after, and freaks out about it.  Now this wasn’t bad, I am honestly enjoying this aspect of the show, it is a lot of fun watching Roy come to terms with this life changing event, and figuring just what sort of paths in life this opens up to him.  Also, we get some  great Thea moments, she is honestly becoming one of my favorite characters in this show.  She has grown immensely from the spoiled princess she was in season one.  She is now a smart, competent, caring, and understanding young woman.  What the writers are lacking in Laurel’s character, they are making up for in spades with Thea.

At the end of this, Oliver approaches Roy as the Arrow and offers to train him, help him get control of his powers.  Essentially, we are probably looking at the birth of Red Arrow here, possible maybe jumping him straight to Arsenal. (I honestly can’t see them calling him Speedy in this series)  Either way, looking forward to where this goes.

Overall, pretty lackluster episode this week.  Laurel was a definite drawback, and since so much of the episode revolved around her, I honestly found it pretty dull to watch.  Not everything was bad, there was some fun bits here and there, Felicity and Diggle always serve to bring some good one liners and quips, and Thea was amazingg as always, but still, could have been SO SO SO much better if they had just dumped Laurel, or actually make her interesting.

Goon out.

Gotta Love a Scandal: Goon Reviews Castle “Limelight”

822x (2)

 

So the dead person isn’t actually the dead person, it is the still living person’s now dead body double.  Congratulations, Castle never saw that one coming.

We open with a fun scene between Castle and Beckett, wherein Beckett finds a news article about Castle getting back together with his ex-wife, fun to watch and also lets us know that their relationship isn’t that public of thing, something the show has not touched on very much in the past, so nice to see that being brought up.  It also served to set up a fun, recurring joke through the episode.  The amusement is cut short when Pi, who we have not seen for awhile, arrives to pick up a recommendation letter for a grant he is applying for, set up for the another subplot in the episode, but more on that later.

With the set up out of the way, we jump right into the CoW, this week, a train wreck pop star is found dead in an alley behind her apartment.  This is a clever mislead from the writers, as it is shortly revealed that the dead woman is not actually the pop star Mandy Sutton, played by Alexandra Chando, but rather her body double, used to throw off the paparazzi.  As far as the main plot goes, things proceed fairly regularly with the following of leads and finding suspects.  However, the whole Mandy still being alive thing does offer a nice break from the normal, as I have noticed Castle has been pretty big on doing these past few weeks.  I liked this, I really did, I found Mandy to be a fairly enjoyable character to watch.  Throughout the episode I found myself sympathizing with her, respecting her, wanting to smack her for being an idiot, and laughing at some of her antics.  The best being her talk with Castle in the break room, it is always fun to see Castle get taken down a peg or two in regards to his self perceived status as a celebrity.  Honestly, she was probably the best part of the actual crime solving part of the episode, the other characters weren’t bad in anyway, but nothing to make them really stand out from what they do every week.  Everyone played their roles well and were fun to watch, but they were all pretty run of the mill.

In the end, after the requisite number of suspects, misleads, and dead ends, the killer is revealed to be Mandy’s mother/manager, who orchestrated a fake scandal between Mandy and her Ex, using her double in the process, all because she didn’t Mandy to actually have a normal life.   I called her as the killer at about half way through the episode, but it wasn’t obvious.  Her closing lines of everything she did, she did for Mandy was just flat out twisted and disturbing, which fit perfectly with her character.  She was much more of a manger than a mother, so it would make sense that everything she did would be in the best interest of her daughter’s career over her happiness.

Best part of this episode, Alexis.  We haven’t seen in her awhile and her triumphant return to the show was fantastic.  We see her acting as friend, confidant, and ally of Mandy as she deals with the death of her double, her sorrow over the state of her life, and her desire to find the truth behind the murder, while at the same time trying to work through her own problems.  Those problems being Pi. (big shocker there)  Alexis is having doubts about her relationship with him, and has come to the realization that she doesn’t want to be in a relationship with him, but doesn’t know how to end it.  While we don’t see any resolution to this sub plot this week, it was nice to see her doing something again, as I have said before, the best aspect of this series is Castle and his family, so we definitely need more of them in the future.

Ryan and Esposito fall into their usual roles of support for Castle and Beckett and providing the bits of comedic relief to break up the tension of the murder investigation.   They are the ones that pick up the running gag of Castle and his ex-wives and run with it through the episode, which is perfectly in character for them and had me laughing.   While doing nothing to stand out, like we saw a couple of episodes back, they were fantastic in their usual roles and were, like always, ever so much fun to watch.

In the end, we close out with Mandy going off wit her perfectly normal, average Joe, boyfriend, presumably to live a happy and normal life.  Castle gives Alexis the recommendation letter for Pi, which he has been trying to write throughout the entire episode, to Alexis.  Alexis herself seems to have come to some conclusion about how to handle things with Pi, hopefully we will see the outcome of that next week.  And Ryan and Esposito get in one last shot at Castle’s love life as we discover that Beckett has put aside her issues of being in the limelight and had her and Castle’s wedding announcement printed.

Overall, best episode we have seen since the mid season break ended, and definitely one of the best we have seen this season.  It had some twists that captured the viewers interest, an honestly likable victim of tragedy, and some great father/daughter moments between Castle and Alexis.  Season six of Castle continues to wow and amaze, and I have absolute faith that the rest of the season will continue with this trend.

Goon out.

 

Snooty and Goon: Ride Along

One of these things is not like the other.

One of these things is not like the other.

It’s cop and almost-cop going toe to toe with the city’s greatest, slumming-est villain in a new episode of Snooty and Goon!

Click here to ride along with the new episode!

Your word of the day: Pineapple.

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